AceShowbiz - "The Walking Dead" set up Negan's arrival in prologue scene that was played after the midseason finale. The fact that Negan himself (played by Jeffrey Dean Morgan) didn't appear in the prologue scene only makes fans more curious about how this comic book character will be depicted on the TV series and how bad he is as a villain.
To give viewers clues about how Negan will be different from previous villains on the show, showrunner Scott M. Gimple describes the character. "Negan is pure id. Just unmitigated id," he tells USA Today. "He's not a psychopath. He's not crazy. But he is driven and he is very much a character totally unique to the landscape of the walking dead that we've seen thus far."
Star Andrew Lincoln also teases the threat that Negan and his group pose to Rick and other survivors. "They're incredibly bad, far more organized, and far more terrifying than anything we've ever seen before," the Rick depicter tells EW. "And things start to get very, very, very dark."
As to why Deanna had to die in the midseason finale, Gimple explains, "She died helping Rick. That's exactly what happened with her.... And she fighting the world side-by-side with Rick in the exact same way that Rick had done it - she had achieved that transformation, and there's a cost to that transformation."
On what Deanna's dying speech about the Alexandrians being Rick's people means to Rick's journey ahead, Gimple elaborates, "[In 601] we started with him not feeling the Alexandrians are ready and if they're not ready then too bad for them. Or in 603, he's saying a lot of them aren't going to make it and you can't let them pull you down."
"To Deanna saying to him - and she died in some ways to save Rick and keep him safe - they're all his people. That's one of the most important things for Rick to realize and to come to, and it doesn't seem like he's entirely come to it yet. And Deanna with one of her final breaths is trying to get that through to his soul."
Similar to what Gimple says, Lincoln says of Deanna's last words, "The moment Rick arrives in Alexandria, I think he was very suspicious, and also because of the environment that he's been pulling his family through for two years. You know, he arrives at this place and he's understandably distrustful and concerned and much more about looking after his own. And also there were problems with leadership and challenges last season, and certainly he hasn't had time to really assimilate, he just hasn't, and he says it to her."
But as to whether Rick will take Deanna's words about being one community to heart, Lincoln coyly says, "You'll just have to wait for the season to play out."
"The Walking Dead" returns with the second half of season 6 in February 2016.